Saturday, August 27, 2016

50 reasons why I love China

It’s in total 6 months of me living in China & I have gathered these below 50 reasons why I love my stay in china. All the below reasons are based on my experiences that I have encountered living in Shenzhen & Beijing:
  1. Getting all the attention in public places for being a foreigner
  2. Kids staring at me as If I am an alien
  3. Random strangers asking if I am from India with lots of excitement
  4. Strangers  Complimenting “You are beautiful”
  5. At tourist places young & old people's asking for picture with them – making you feel someone important
  6. At metro strangers taking pictures of me as If I don’t come from this planet
  7. If I was ever lost & asked people for directions…they have walked me down to my destination to assure I don’t get lost.
  8. That big smile on the driver's face when I hop in his taxi
  9. Connected with our Local police officer on Wechat …now he is just a ping away in case I get into any situation.
  10. My team back in office that spoils me & are there to always support me.
  11. Joy & fun in learning Chinese
  12. The eyes which sparkle when I say some words in Chinese to my vegetable vendor
  13. Making new friends coming from all over the world & learning more about their culture
  14. Weekend events -  Workshop,  tech/ startup meetups.
  15. Getting to buy electronics from the city which is called the silicon valley for hardware
  16. Having the coolest boss who is inspiring as a women leader
  17. My Chinese friends who look forward to eat Indian curries cooked by me
  18. When people in china talk so rich about Indian culture & bollywood..,making me feel so proud of the land I belong!
  19. Making genuine new friends and exploring new places in the city
  20. Reliable & easy public transportation which give me more time for myself
  21. Clean beaches & green parks to cycle around
  22. City which believes a lot in recycling & up cycling
  23. Money when you donate plastic bottles in this machine
  24. Wechat – not only for communication but for money transaction & translations
  25. mWallet – no worries of losing money or thrift
  26.  Korea, Japan, Philippines are now easy and cheap vacation destinations.   
  27. Why worry about Google apps not supportive in China when we have apps like Baidu maps, Weibo, WeChat which are way too perfect.
  28. Helpful people all around
  29. Too many options for vegan restaurants
  30. Feeling so safe let it be any time in the day or night.
  31. Freedom to wear whatever you want – as people around give Zero F***
  32. Chinese are amazingly hospitable and more sensitive towards others
  33. From the Great Wall of China to Buddhist temples – china surprises me with its rich culture.
  34. Diverse Landscape
  35. Chinglish – The way Chinese translate single words or full sentences is just too funny
  36. The Chinese doctors prescribe herbs for any ailment and it really works
  37. Random Silliness
  38. Street & talent show
  39. There is always lot of food, alcohol & fireworks with some breath-talking performance talking place all over china
  40. Old couples in evenings practicing dance moves keeping their love alive and making attempts to stay young as they exercise while dancing
Cheese Cake, Avocado, Ackee Fruits, Green tea, traditional music of China, sunny Climate, cute chinese kids, sports clubs, English & Chinese corners. 

Having said that I still have lots to explore in Mainland China. At this time, I am great full for all that I experience here in China & cheers for more 50 reasons that I will explore in the coming months.

Friday, August 26, 2016

This & That Shenzhen

All that it takes to keep our city clean
Tech Expo
Why do we prefer our phones over real human interaction?
You will find artist all around the town
This is how a veggie like me survives in Shenzhen.
No matter what time it is .... lets work towards staying fit 
Learning the art of eating with Chinese chopsticks
Street Dancers & Hipsters

Saturday, July 9, 2016

Rebag: Suitability Design Story

I happened to hear Yi Wang today who is a social enterprise working on sustainability fashion. She is an inspiring woman who has founded Rebag. Here is her story:
What is Rebag?
Rebag is a social enterprise and creative accessories brand which discovers and integrates different elements of fabric, techniques, and accessories across culture and regions.
How do they make Rebag products?
It's through upcycling process which is higher than recycling. The goal is to make current things better than it was before. They not only use used products but also products from access inventory from clothing brands or online stores like Tmall, Allibaba etc.
They re-innovate, re-design to build handbags, phone cases & laptop bags. While in this making journey they engage with social workers, craftsman, designers to promote green life practices & build value added products.
The vision of Rebag?
Yi wants to see rebag become a platform in 5 to 6 years where if you have an old jeans and put this in the rebag the platform can suggest it be redesigned  & produced to be a pillow, bag, purse, pouch, toy etc. A platform for sustainability believers to remake products.
How do they sell?
Online – through their website
Offline – flee markets, clothing fairs, etc

Her advice about building a team?
Hire people who are passionate about your vision
Skilled people who are ready to go through the ups & downs with you in this startup journey
Never compromise when you are trying to hire people as there are talented people out there.
Current business & distribution challenges:
Driving traffic to the website, making the product count as a fashion brand, reaching out to people with the brand vision, figuring out shipping expenses, profit margins and dealing with operational cost.
Current marketing challenges?
Saying the story of the brand, driving traffic to the website. Making people love the products & showcasing it as a fashion accessory.

Her inspirational story:
“We started as clothes refashioning company with jobs of dignity and moved on to become a creative design brand which believes that sharing stories of people and culture behind our accessories products brings inspiration and empowerment.”

She believed that the world needs to embrace sustainability. Thus she started up with Rebag.

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Highlights: Start-up Your E-Commerce Business in China

This week I happened to attend a Seminar on how to get started with eCommerce in China for foreigners. I have got you some key highlights of the event & some not so good snaps of the keynote, but useful ones :-)
Despite the opportunities that the fast growth of e-commerce presents to Foreign SME’s to access or expand their operations in China Market, there is still a lack of understanding concerning the establishment, development and maintenance of an online business. In this context, the set-up of an e-commerce platform should be tailor-made to attract online shoppers’ appeal, without overlooking China’s online legal and tax framework.
China loves foreign brands, but you need to consider the logistic part of where to import your products & how much tax you are supported to pay to the china government to assure you get the best price into the market & yet make your profit.
Real cases will be used to simulate this journey, from the ideas conception to the execution, as well as the daily back-office operations of running an online shop. This seminar aims at showcasing the tools that a company needs to successfully run an online business. During the seminar direct and practical questions will be presented and covered, such as:
You should ask the right questions before you start you business:
- Are my products or services suitable for online business? 
- What are the steps to take in order to open an online store? 
- Can I open and run an online shop if I only have a representative company?
- What kind of web designs do Chinese customers like?
- How do I promote online?
- How do I handle online transactions and what payment options do I have?
- Will my company be facing double taxation?
- How does it work with invoicing? - Where should I store my stock?
Last not the least - the Proz & Cons of getting started in China market:
1. China user base is very big, an interesting market which you can't ignore.
2. Instead of starting your own eCommerce website, use the china market place. Get started with
3. Always work with Chinese vendors to get an easy start.Use Chinese marketing tools & langues to reach out to locals.
4. China government rules are very dynamic and are very different. Obey them to survive.

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Garrett Gee is living the idea Dream!

I wonder at times how can someone be living such a perfect life when I heard & got to know Garrett Gee!

To introduce him in short – “He is an entrepreneur who sold his Scan app to Snapchat for $54 Million and is now travelling the world with his wife & two kids”

I wanted to share his inspiring story here with these beautiful visuals that I got from his Instagram account.

Started Scan:
Garrett started Scan while he was a freshman at Brigham Young University together with his 2 other college mates. Scan is an app which is used to connect to real world with the digital universe through mobile scanning technology like QR code, bar codes, beacons & more.
He raised $8 million in funding for Scan, which had 50 million downloads worldwide.

Balancing Scan & Soccer:
He became the caption of BYU soccer team while he was chasing his dream with Scan. For him hard work doesn’t feel like hard work when you love what you do and you understand what you’re working towards.

Shark Tank:
The 20-something dropped out of BYU to develop the Scan app, after receiving funding from Google. Scan was considered so user friendly and popular that it knocked Angry Birds off the App Store top ten list.

Garrett appeared in Shark Tank, he didn’t get the funding but his presence made US believe that he will be big with his idea someday soon.

Fell in love:
Life is meaningful when you find someone with whom you can share it. Jessica was just the right girl for him. He married her and they do everything together. She makes it all worth it & enjoyable.
Sold his company:
He & his co-founders then sold Snap to Snapchat for a reported $54 Millions in 2014. $30 Million in cash and the rest in equity in Snapchat.

Decided to sell his belongings:
Garrett Gee decided to ditch the regular lifestyle and travel the world after selling Scan. So he and his wife decided to sell most of their belongings, including their cars, furniture, TV and extra clothes, and are using money they made to fund their adventures. 
Travelling the world:
Here’s the crazy & most inspiring part. The couple and their two young children, Dorsey and Manilla, call themselves "The Bucket List Family." So far, 25-year-old Garrett and 29-year-old Settie are travelling with their kids to a wide range of exotic spots, such as Turks and Caicos, Thailand, Australia, Tahiti and Hawaii.
Take Away: 
It’s so important to follow your passion & not follow the rules but go with your own instinct. If you believe in something go hard chasing for it. You will meet success & always keep inspiring people around you by being the best form of yourself.

Look what just happened. I tweeted about him & he shows his like on Twitter. Life is magical go out & live it J 
Learn more:

The Bucket List Family Youtube link

Garrett gee Instagram link

Thursday, June 2, 2016

Internet Report 2016

The "Queen of the Internet" Mary Meeker's Internet Trends report released today at the 2016 General Assembly in the US.

Below is the quick summary of the report with the highlights:

The number of Internet users worldwide exceeded 3 billion, an increase of 9 percent over the previous year, the global Internet penetration rate reached 42%. 

India's Internet users reached 277 million, up 40% over last year which makes India the second largest Internet market, after China.

The global smart phone users increased by 21% over the previous year, an increase of 31 percent last year, the growth rate slowed down; after a 5-year high growth in 2015 global smart phone shipments up 10%, up 28% last year.

Smartphone users in Asia Pacific grew 23% last year up 35%.

Global mobile phone operating system share, iOS share in 2015 was 16%, Android share reached 81%.

To benefit from the rapid growth of mobile advertising (66%), 2015 US online advertising grew by 20% last year to 16% in 2015 increased by only 5% of the desktop ads.

Google and Facebook, the two companies together to eat 76 percent of the US online advertising market.

Desktop ad blocking users has reached 220 million mobile ad blocker users reached 420 million, mainly concentrated in China, India and Indonesia.

E-commerce share of the US retail distribution channels, from less than 2% in 2000, increased to more than 10% in 2015, reached more than $ 340 billion.

Message type applications continue its rapid growth, industry leaders including WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, WeChat.

Voice is becoming a computing interface is the most efficient form of computer input, the machine accuracy of the speech recognition from about 70% in 2010, increased to about 90% by 2016.

IPhone sales in 2015 may have reached its peak, the next Amazon Echo equipment sales will begin to take off?

China Internet Report:
From more than one measure, China has become the market leader in the Internet, the number of Chinese Internet users reached 668 million.

Tencent, Alibaba, Baidu three companies are China's mobile Internet market leader, they accounted for 71% of Chinese users of mobile consumer long time.

2015, China's online advertising market has more than television advertising.

2016, There were 31% of the micro-channel micro-channel shopping users, while in 2015 the figure was 15%.

Global Internet market leader: Apple, Google, Amazon, Facebook, Tencent, Alibaba and other companies, flush with cash.

What do you think about this report & is this what you expect to be coming by?

Link to the complete video

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Instagram at Green Room

Me and couple of my friends in Shenzhen planned to visit today Green Room where they were hosting Instagreen Party!

I am writing this post not because we had lots of fun...because I loved the concept how Social element was well integrated in food & beverage space.

So the concept was very simple: Green Room which is a pure vegan restaurant had 3 Fuji Instax Mini's. We were asked to take pictures from the camera and decorate them with Fuji Instax sticker frames, write our name and hang them up on the sky curtain. 

Each person had to take 4 pictures for each category: Food, Drinks, Person, Atmosphere
For this we had to order food & drinks. Once we got it on our table we started taking pictures from the camera. 
As it was the first time I was trying out the camera - we got some bad focused pictures :(
 The winners from each category will WIN 100rmb gift certificate to Green Room and the most voted for photo over all gets to take home a brand new Instax Mini 8! 
At the end we manged to get our hands on Fuji camera & managed to click some cool & amazing pics. I fell in love with the Polaroid concept. 
                                     As the photos started filling the wall the voting started! 
I was amazed to see the kind of creative pictures people had clicked. 

Concept: I never knew that while dinning involving oneself into an activity with a group will be so much fun. Plus Green House not only got new customers, more orders but smartly make their customers fall in love with the food & place. 

This I would call a perfect art of marketing & sales via Gamification 

Friday, April 15, 2016

Long overdue - let's catch up

Let me see, so much has been happening since my last post, which was about M2M. I can assure you I’m as random as ever. Lets go month by month and pick out the highlights! 

I was very particular about not sharing too much personal stuff on my blog…guess I am becoming more of a private person and trying my best to protect the best things that are happening to me. I have also realised that I am not too found of attention and people talking about me.

In the month of Nov after I left OnePlus India, I learnt a very big career lesson. Its not important for which brand you are working, assure that you have good & inspiring leaders. So to all those who wondered why did I leave the company within a year you got my answer.

I also believe “Most companies fail because of leadership.. Never because of product”.
Since Nov my life has been very adventurous. I was working on a project with Vodafone in Chennai. Loving the people, food, beaches & roads of Chennai. Everything was just close to perfect & that’s when Chennai floods came in. That night the rain never stopped. It was pitch dark and no power throughout the city. I was locked in my flat & luckily my area had no water lock. The morning was a terror. I was hearing the news of what was going on in Chennai and to the death stories. I cant describe the pain the city went through ….nor can I hold back my tears as I go back to those days. I had to leave the city the very next day, but I have this regret that I wasn’t around to do my best for the people & the city.  
So, from my learning - if you ever get a chance to do any community service for people please take up such opportunities.

For new years I along with my sister & dear friends travelled to Belum Caves and Gandikota. After seeing the negative side of nature in Chennai I got to see the beauty of nature.
Traveling is fun & more importantly for me it helps me re-defined my perceptions about things, places & people.

It was my first visit to Kolkata –some how I connected to the place very easily. 
Well life was getting easy, less exciting & challenging. So the crazy part of me wanted to explore how life & career shapes up in Shenzhen. So here I am, blogging from my sweet home, road-facing apartment.
So far it has been an exciting journey. Yes, life is not easy here:
- I don’t have free open Internet to surf Google, FB, Twitter, Youtube & many more sites
- For a vegetarian like me, we have very less options to eat outside.
- Hardly people know to speak English & all the signboards are in Chinese text.
- I use an app to communicate with people here.
- Away from Family & Friends.
I left back a very comfortable life back in India, but guess what I love it all.

Do you wonder what makes me like China? Well my next blog post will have some very interesting stories from the life I am living here. Till than take care & love!